I recently had the opportunity to go see “Grace, or The Art of Climbing” written by Lauren Feldman, a fantastic play about a reluctant young athlete for whom rock climbing is both metaphor and action. The main character, Emm struggles with doubt, depression and her demons, as she trains mind, body and spirit for a world climbing competition.
In addition, I had the amazing opportunity interview the author of the play, Lauren Feldman, about the creation of the play and how she as a climber herself used her own experiences to write the storyline. For anyone looking to take their passion for the outdoors, travel, or their sport, and combine it with another passion or pursuit, such as in this case Lauren’s career as a playwright, it’s truly inspiring to hear what she has to say.
Lauren was spot on with her use of climbing metaphors to represent life. The tagline of of the play is, “Who will be your belay?” Because that’s what life is, isn’t it? It’s a series of experiences, transitions, challenges, and opportunities and we can’t go at them alone. We must rely on others, and others must rely on us – and that’s part of the beauty of human relationships on and off of the rock.
Check out this video of their climbing set being built:
The storyline, actors, and the general art of climbing teach us the difference between letting go and holding on, when to keep “climbing”, when to take a leap of faith and believing the net will appear. They show us the dynamics of relationships from daughter and father, to lover and ex lover, to new friends and old friends, to the most important one: our relationship with ourselves.
The play is currently playing at the Denver Center of Performing Arts from January 18th, 2012 – February 17th, 2013. It’s hands down a show to see if you’re in the area. You’ll be cracking up, shedding a few tears, and leaving the theatre feeling like you understand life, and the art of climbing, a whole lot more.
Image Credit: In Good Taste Denver